With little more than a month to go to the 37th World Diamond Congress, the biennial meeting of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA), the WFDB is putting the final touches to the programme and has announced the speakers list for the meeting.
The overarching theme of the Congress, which will take place in Dubai from May 16 to 19, is Transparency, Responsibility and Sustainability, and speakers and panellists have been selected to address the issues which will be discussed by the WFDB’s 30 presidents and more than 200 representatives of the global diamond industry.
The keynote speaker will be Geshe Michael Roach, an American non-traditional teacher of Buddhism and Philanthropist who wrote the best-selling book, The Diamond Cutter, on Buddhism and business. In addition, ABN Amro Bank’s Head of Diamond and Jewelry Clients, Erik Jens, De Beers Head of Commercial Development, Howard Davies, and Signet Jewelers Vice President of Corporate Affairs David Bouffard, will also be taking part as speakers and panellists. Diamond consultant and former De Beers executive Tim Dabson will introduce speakers and moderate the panel discussions.
“We have selected high-powered individuals from a range of fields to give real content and meaning to our discussions,” WFDB President Ernie Blom said. “These include representatives of producers, diamond-mining countries and a range of service organisations, such as banks and labs. It is absolutely crucial that we are able to comprehensively debate all the challenges facing our industry around the world.
“In addition to speeches, we are introducing an interactive element at this Congress with the panel discussions that are going to be held. We are looking for a broad conversation and that means encouraging audience members to respond to comments from panellists. How do we take our diamond business forward and create new opportunities while working in a transparent, responsible and sustainable manner? These are the questions we will be asking,” Blom added.